A Picture Book for Visually Impaired Children

By Chamari Edirisinghe, Norhidayati Podari, Stefania Sini, Adrian David Cheok

Chamari - Project description

Experience of reading for children is enriched by visual displays. Researchers suggest through picture book experiences, children expose themselves to develop socially, intellectually, and culturally. However, the beauty of reading is an experience sighted children naturally indulge, and which visually-impaired children struggle with. Our multi- sensory book is an attempt to create a novel reading experience specifically for visually- impaired children. While a sighted person’s mental imagining is constructed through visual experiences, a visually-impaired person’s mental images are a product of haptic, and sounds. Our book is introducing multi-sensory interactions, through touch, smell, and sound. The concept is also aiming to address a certain lack of appropriately designed technologies for visually-impaired children.

Our book titled “Alice and her Friend” is folding out to reveal a story about a cat, whose activities are presented with multi-sensory interactions. There are six pages in this book, with different sensors and actuators integrated in each page. The pages were designed with textures, braille, large font text, sounds, and smell. With this book, we believe we have contributed a new reading experience to the efforts of visually- impaired children to understand the beauty of the world.